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Supporting Your Career

Training & Development – A Supportive Learning Environment

Our training and development ethos is to continually enhance the quality of the service we offer to our clients and to ensure that all our employees have the skills and knowledge needed to work effectively and efficiently. We understand that learning and development are integral to our success and at Mayer Brown we recognise the importance of individuality. We actively encourage people to take responsibility early in their careers and provide a supportive environment in order to help them achieve this.

We have a central training and development department which organises both technical and professional skills training. Our courses complement the career development framework for legal staff and our professional skills courses are tailor-made for the needs of individuals and their departments.
The foundation of our suite of professional skills initiatives are the annual rolling programmes for each level of associate, ranging from newly qualified to partner. Examples of courses available on our annual rolling programmes include: Legal Project Management, MBA Essentials and Negotiating with Impact. Alongside the rolling programmes we also hold annual development centres at trainee, associate and senior associate level, including:

  • The Associate Development Centre (ADC) has been designed to introduce attendees to develop their self awareness and the key management skills expected of Mayer Brown's senior associates. The course also incorporates the SRA Management Stage One Course. The ADC aims to concentrate on the professional skills identified below:
    • Managing People
    • Client Relationship Management
    • Managing Finance
    • Managing Information
  • The Senior Associate Development Centre (SADC) has been developed with the main focus of introducing our senior associates to the areas of management competency in which they will be expected to have developed proficiency if they are to be considered for partnership. The objectives of the programme are to enable senior associates to take responsibility for their own career development, to build relationships with peers across the firm both in the UK and globally, to enhance their client relationship skills and to consider the partnership process at Mayer Brown.

Our trainers for all initiatives are selected carefully to ensure the utmost quality in delivery and content and are either experienced professionals from within our own employees or sourced externally.

Also within the central training and development department, we have a dedicated legal skills training team. The professionals within the legal training team are qualified lawyers who understand the environment in which the fee earners operate and their knowledge needs.

Each practice group has its own designated training partner with whom the legal training team works to set up:

  • Rolling training programmes for specific practice areas which are targeted at appropriate levels (e.g. Foundation programmes aimed at trainees, Core programmes aimed at associates and Masterclasses aimed at senior associates and partners).
  • Updates/refreshers for specific practice groups or joint sessions with other practice groups as well as sessions delivered to the whole firm. Each group has monthly or bi-monthly update sessions and fee earners are also offered additional topic specific sessions. The firm emphasizes the importance of knowledge sharing between the groups and we actively look for opportunities for joint training. All updates/refreshers are called Focus sessions and are generally targeted at fee earners of all levels. These sessions may also be opened up to clients.

Most of our training sessions are delivered in-house by our fee earners but external providers are used when that is the best option. The training is delivered in a variety of formats, ranging from small group face to face workshops, to large auditorium style lectures, to webinars and e-learning modules. In addition, fee earners can request to attend external training events or undertake professional qualifications to suit their own development needs.
We have an excellent Information Centre and our information facilities, including on-line resources and knowledge management system, are available throughout the London practice.

Appraisals
At Mayer Brown we think it is important for you to have feedback on your performance. We do this through a comprehensive appraisal process, linked to remuneration. Formal appraisals are held once a year, and reviewed six monthly, and are a benchmark of your progress. The appraisal also helps to identify any training or development issues and is useful to help you to manage your own career, building on your own individual strengths and interests.

Supporting the appraisal process are numerous development opportunities, including a formal mentoring programme. Piloted in 2011, the scheme aims to support associates that wish to have a mentor from across the practice areas and is the perfect opportunity for individuals to informally discuss aspects of their work, to help support a good variety and spread of work. This formal mentoring programme works in conjunction with some of the more informal mentoring schemes which have historically been available in each department.

Promotion Prospects
Never before has partnership at Mayer Brown been so exciting. Partnership is granted to individuals on successful attainment of all selection criteria which is evaluated by our partner selection committee.

The Partnership in London is currently around 100 lawyers from all practice areas, many of whom have trained and been promoted at Mayer Brown together with a number of strategic lateral hires. We are a progressive leadership team where talent is rewarded and where entrepreneurialism is combined with good business sense.

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